On May 15, addressing the rally of the PDM (Pakistan Democratic Movement) at Constitutional avenue of Islamabad, vice President of PDM and chairman of the PashtunKhwa Milli Awami Party (PkMAP), Mahmood Khan Achakzai astutely explained the factors behind Pakistan’s prevailing political instability and uncertainties, saying that the ‘troika’ of military generals, judges and politicians were the “principal factors that have brought Pakistan to the brink of failures and sensitivities”.
“Parliament has never been allowed to work as the supreme institution of the state, instead, generals and judges along with self-centric politicians have always helped to sabotage democracy, undermine constitution, and paralyse the dignity of the parliament of Pakistan,” Mr. Achakzai said. Mr. Achakzai further asked the aforementioned institutional stakeholders to negotiate, protect constitution, stop misuse of law, and ensure sanctity and supremacy of the parliament.
“In fact, Pakistan is a constitutional state. Constitutional supremacy and a sovereign parliament can keep us united; but political stability in Pakistan is strictly conditional to to non-interference of establishment in politics,” Mr. Achakzai clarified. While addressing the death anniversary of his father Abdul Samad Khan Achakzai on December 2, 2022 in Quetta, he said, “we have no problem with our security agencies, and will respect if they don’t interfere in political affairs. And the military must strictly adhere to professional standards to avoid political intervention and failure of democracy”.
Addressing a public meeting held in Quetta in memory of the martyrs of October 7 and 11, 2022, Mahmood Khan Achakzai said that “only a democratic Pakistan can guarantee political stability and national integrity”.
“And for this, all parties should work together to ensure a strong democracy in the country. From MRD, APDM to PDM, all movements were created to stabilize democracy in the country, and prevent undemocratic forces from coming to power,” Mr. Achakzai reminded all and sundry.
He continued, “For a stable and democratic Pakistan, Pashtun, Sindhi, Baloch, Punjabi and Saraiki should be equal. At least, we Pashtuns will not let anyone to rob our resources. If we need to resist, we will not avoid it”.
Undoubtedly, democracy, constitutional supremacy, and independence of parliament are very important for a stable and peaceful Pakistan. The regional strategic chessboard is changing. A new great game, or call it a new Cold War, is all set to stage its theatre in the region. Pakistan needs to focus on its internal security and stability to minimise the impacts of transnational security threats.
Mr. Achakzai’s stance on Afghanistan is far more democratic and vividly clear. For Achakzai, as he quotes frequently, peace in Afghanistan is essential for peace and stability in Pakistan. An unstable Afghanistan is dangerous for the entire region. “We will never tolerate the interference of neighboring countries in Afghanistan,” Achakzai maintained, adding that “If any country thinks that intervening in Afghanistan will help to increase its influence, it will prove disastrous”.
From Alexander the Great to Genghis Khan, a number of other great powers, including modern-day powers, tried to conquer Afghanistan, but retreated in disgrace. We must learn this vital lesson from history.
Referring to the Taliban government, Achakzai categorically says that “the Taliban government in Afghanistan will survive if they take care of security, stability, and sovereignty of Afghanistan”. Without calling a Loya Jirga (grand tribal council), national integrity in Afghanistan is impossible.
In his meeting with recent visit of Afghan Taliban’s foreign minister Amir Khan Muttaqi to Pakistan, Mahmood Khan Achakzai again urged the Taliban government to take all stakeholders into their fold, extend negotiations, call a Loyal Jirga, and build a roadmap for permanent peace and security in Afghanistan.
Sagaciously, the world also needs to focus on economic, security, political and other challenges which have preoccupied the entire state of Afghanistan. Pakistan and Afghanistan should learn to live peacefully, and in a brotherly way. Both countries can live as wonderful neighbors if true respect for each other’s territorial integrity and sovereignty is there.
In all public gatherings, Mahmood Khan Achakzai has always urged Pakistan and other immediate neighbours to respect sovereignty of Afghanistan, and follow non-interventionism. On 10 May, addressing the golden jubilee ceremony of the 1973 Constitution of Pakistan, Mr. Achakzai asked Afghanistan’s neighbours including Pakistan to work together, and help to stabilise Afghanistan which will prove a strategic junction for regional states for trade cooperation and security. “Without peaceful Afghanistan, regional stability and prosperity shall remain a dream,” Mr. Achakzai proclaimed.
Mahmood Khan Achakzai also congratulated Saudi Arabia and Iran on their recent peace agreement, and the resumption of diplomatic ties after a long period. He asked Pakistan and other immediate neighbouring states to emulate the Saudi-Iran example move forward with its own neighbours, to cooperate for peace, economic development, and security, which will surely pave a roadmap to stabled Afghanistan.
To conclude, there is no doubt that a disrupted Afghanistan will remain a threat to the peace of entire region, and Pakistan will be always be the frontline state to face the consequences of unstable Afghanistan. Our security experts & civil-military leadership should turn their focus into containing the insecurity and instability within Afghanistan.
Cooperation and mutual understanding between the two states on security matters will surely help to divert rise of terror groups which may threaten the peace and security of Pakistan and Afghanistan. In this regards, Mr. Achakzai’s democratic principles and statements are prerequisites to follow.
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